Pre-holiday week

Pre-holiday Poppy had two riding lessons, both on a lovely horse, Coral who is a requires a little less encouragement to get moving. Poppy was particularly happy on her last lesson as she went on a hack 🙂

We did more fruit picking, the girls have earned themselves about £20!

Sunday we spent a lovely day at Stanwick Lakes withe the H family 🙂 Skye, Poppy, A & E had a great time at the play area and even managed not to get wet! Definitely a wellies and change of clothing place but they did well to resist the stepping stones in the ‘moat’ and all children came home dry, well almost, i think there was one soggy foot! Downside were the amount of wasps and the car parking charges which they have sneakily put up for bank holidays/summer holidays. 😦

Wayne had to work Saturday and Bank Holiday Monday so the girls and I spent Saturday in town getting last minute holiday bits and Monday we sorted and packed. The girls made a den in the garden, rescued a young hedgehog who was wandering around in daylight, releasing him in the garden in the evening 🙂

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Go Ape!

My Dad was 60 earlier this year and what do you get a Dad who has everything?? Well, we decided to get him a voucher for Go Ape. My Dad may be 60 but he is a very fit man and last weekend, we all travelled to Thetford Forest so the boys could monkey around in the tree tops! The weather was pretty wet and miserable but we went anyway.

Once they were harnessed up they listened carefully to their safety brief and they were off, 2 1/2 hrs of zip wiring, tightrope walking, tunnel crawling and throwing themselves into cargo nets! They had a fab time! Myself, the girls, my Mum and sister followed them on their treetop adventure with our feet firmly on the ground, though I really fancied having a go myself. Dad mentioned he was going to get me a voucher for my birthday and that he would come with me 🙂

I think he really enjoyed it. Apparently it was very tiring and hard work on pretty much every muscle in your body.

By the time they were half way round the sun had started to break through so we finished off our day with a picnic and then onto Mum and Dads for a bbq.

Had a fab day and would definitely recommend Go Ape to anyone 🙂

Warwick Castle

My sister and b-i-l kindly gave us a family ticket for Warwick Castle for Christmas last year and thought it was about time we made use of it 🙂

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It seems ages since we stayed in a hotel so we booked ourselves into a Travelodge in Coventry for the Sunday night. We had a little wander about the shops then walked over to Ikea which was in town centre and decided to have our tea there 🙂 Back at the hotel we played cards and the girls did some gym (our room was huge!)

Despite being a Sunday evening, it was rather noisy on the streets of Coventry. I was woken up at 3.30am by shouting outside thankfully the girls slept through it 😦

After a large breakfast the following morning, we set off to Warwick Castle. My sister gave us a tip not to park in the grounds as it’s quite expensive so we found a side road and parked there for free! 🙂

We had a great day, and were fortunate enough to arrive in time to watch the raising of the Portcullis.

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We particularly enjoyed the bird of prey displays

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We loved the jousting and seeing the trebuchet working.

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Wishing I had taken more notice of the Manor Borns blog on their recent visit to Warwick Castle and avoided The Princess Tower Tour, our girls were unimpressed! Very lovely if you have under 5s but definitely not one for 10 and 12 year old girls!

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The Kingmaker display was very good though and we enjoyed that 🙂

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It made a change to share our lunch with a peacock!

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..and bump into Queen Elizabeth I!

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Unfortunately we didn’t manage the ramparts walk, which we really wanted to do. The two attempts we made during the day to walk them were long queues and with the weather being so warm and sunny decided we would leave it and do it on the way out but of course by that time we were all too exhausted to bother!

Wayne went off to fetch the car and the girls and I wandered over to nearby St Nicholas Park and they had a well earned paddle in the outdoor pool before going back to my sisters for tea 🙂

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Awww, sisterly love….

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A jam packed week

From not having any plans for this week, we have been really busy! Not so much on the academic side, though the girls have done some maths, reading and geography, but on a practical level we have done lots.

We are lucky enough to live in a lovely village with a brook running through the middle of is so the girls a have spent a few hours with their wellies on armed with fishing nets catching teeny-weeny frogs and fish.

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We have been busy in the garden cutting away huge amounts of greenery and whilst doing so the girls found frogs in the garden too 🙂

We have been fruit picking, plums, greengages and damsons, from the orchard at work. The boughs on the plum trees are breaking under the weight of the plums! We had so many that the girls set up a little stall outside our house and have sold bags and bags of them!

Plums, Damsons and Greengages for sale

Poppy has also made plum jam which unfortunately didn’t set terribly well but tasted delish 🙂

Poppy's Plum Jam

Skye found a pattern on the internet for some baggy trousers and i helped her measure herself and transfer measurements onto the fabric, cut it out, pinned it and went to sew it all together only to discover the sewing machine is not working 😦 So we walked to my Aunties house to borrow her sewing machine and Poppy got some jam advice from her, to reboil jam until it thickens, place a blob of jam onto a cold saucer, run your finger through the middle of it and if it stays separated then its reached setting point and can be poured into jars 🙂

We popped in to my friends Mum’s new house round the corner from us, stayed for a cup of coffee and she shared dressmaking tips with Skye offering to help her with anything she is unsure of 🙂

Poppy is having a go at rug ragging, as we acquired some tools for it a while back. Only piece of hessian we have though is rather small so it might end up as a lovely cushion cover rather than a rug!

Poppy's rag rug

Girls have watched lots of Dr Whos lately, thanks to a work colleague who is a huge sci-fi fan and keeps bringing dvds into work for us to borrow 🙂 Also watched Roman Mysteries again.

They recently started piano lessons and have been religiously practising at least twice a day 🙂

Poppy had a friend over to play and they had fun with the gel pens, drawing on the windows 🙂 I do love those pens (though the little bits that crumble off and get trodden into the carpet aren’t so good 😦 )

We also spent a lovely evening with the K family, whom we have known for many years but see very little of 😦 C & S’s twins, A & G went to Montessori with Skye and have always got on brilliantly and Friday was no exception 🙂 We completely forgot the time catching up on things and finally left their house at 1am! Saturday was The Beans Summer Party, which deserves a blog of its own 🙂

So with that and preparing for our holiday, catching up on washing etc, its been quite hectic!

Poetry, stories and other things

The girls really seem to be enjoying creative writing, poetry, story writing, and so think we are going to focus on lots of reading/writing for a bit. So far this week, Poppy and Skye both blogged. You can read about Poppy’s holiday with Nana and Papa here and Skye’s scout camp here. 🙂

Just noticed that Poppy and Skye both have draft blog posts, almost, but not quite finished, from our holiday last September! Maybe with all this enthusiasm for writing they might get them completed and posted! I thought i was bad! 🙂

Skye submitted a poem competition entry 🙂 and Poppy is busy writing a short story for the same competition 🙂 Skye has also been busy writing a story, not sure if its going to be short or not yet!

Poppy has also been playing lots of hangman and word games with me recently so spelling confidence improving 🙂

She has also had her eye on getting herself a Blue Peter badge and has picked out a couple of wildlife photos she took to send in and has expressed an interest in doing more photography. A new camera might be something for the Christmas list 😉

Happy Girl

Poppy had her first riding lesson at a new riding school, Scallywag Riding Club, which is only a 10 minute drive from us. Although almost didn’t as I got times muddled so missed our original slot but fortunately they fitted an extra session in at the end of the day 🙂 Pops hasn’t been riding in ages despite weekly requests to start again! She had a fab time 🙂 Owen appears to be a very lovely pony 🙂

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This pic taken with the phone camera makes the pony look like he has very short legs!

K was very please with Poppy’s riding and we have rebooked next lesson so we have one happy girl 🙂 Just need to get more riding boots and jods as hers have got too small!

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